5w40 in high mileage engine

Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
Hi, do you think it is wise to use a 5W40 full synthetic oil in a normally aspirated Volvo engine with 200K miles? The engine was previously running a synthetic blend 10W40 but was on full synthetic earlier in its life. The change is motivated to safely do 10-15K oci and have best overall protection for the engine. Should I fear a higher oil consumption with a 5W40?
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2002
Messages
39,802
Location
Pottstown, PA
I think it's not unwise. No, you should not fear anything. If you get consumption, continue to use it. It will probably retreat. At operating temp, the 5w-40 is within the range of a 40 grade just like your 10w-40 was. I think you get a better offering in the 10w-40 Euro-style. Here most 5w-40 oil are more popular than 10w-40.
 
Joined
Jun 12, 2005
Messages
5,869
Location
North Texas
It depends...try it and see. Thats the only way youll know for sure. The only fear ill have is knowing if the oil can handle that long of an interval.
 

pbm

Joined
Apr 19, 2004
Messages
9,049
Location
New York
A few year ago I put (PAO) synthetic in my b-i-l's Volvo 940 that had about 175K on it. The consumption was more than usual. I never gave it a chance to see if it subsided because I topped it up with dino and all was well.
 
Joined
Mar 17, 2008
Messages
7,257
Location
Michigan
No problem except remember that most Syn oils are not considered long OCI oils. 10,000 would be stretching it for most. A good none like Mobil 1 HM might be the ticket.
 

JHZR2

Staff member
Joined
Dec 14, 2002
Messages
46,795
Location
New Jersey
Ive run it in turbo MB diesels with well over 200k, and conversions to syn at only around 200k, no issues. If consumption occurs, it tends to drop over 10-20k miles. If you develop a leak, you had a problem beforehand anyway...
 

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
 Originally Posted By: Gary Allan
kilou- How long will the 15k take to accumulate? ..and what product are you going to use?
It will probably take around 8 months to get to 15k. Remember I'm talking about 10-15K in kilometers OCI...that's about 6-9K miles OCI! The engine has 200k miles which is 325K km. I'm hesitating between these 2 groups of oils: Synthetic blends 10W40: a) Mobil Super S 10W40 b) Liqui-Moly Super Low Friction 10W40 Full synthetic or HC 5W40: c) Liqui-Moly Synthoil High Tec 5W40 (rated BMW LongLife 98) d) Liqui-Moly Top Tec 4100 5W40 (allows for oci up to 30000km) Links to technical sheets: a) http://www.opieoils.co.uk/pdfs/Mobil/Mobil%20Super%20S%2010w-40.pdf b) http://www.liqui-moly.de/liquimoly/medie...%2010W40_EN.pdf c) http://www.liqui-moly.de/liquimoly/medie...%205W-40_EN.pdf d) http://www.liqui-moly.de/liquimoly/medie...c%204100_EN.pdf The thing is my Volvo engine is very basic (2.0 normally aspirated) so it shouldn't too hard on oil. Volvo recommends OCI of 15000km with 5W40, 10W40 or 15W40 for this engine depending on usage. I wonder if the synthetic blends (good but very basic oils) can provide good protection and withstand such OCI in a high mileage engine. Morever I always heard that a 5W40 would better protect on cold start than a 10W40. That's true for a new engine but what about a high mileage one? Both synthetic oils are very good. The TopTec is not full synthetic but it is recommended by Liqui Moly for my engine...and it can do much more than 15K km OCI in fact (rated BMW LL 04). It has even better spec than the full synthetic Synthoil. The only issue is is a 5W40 really not too thin when cold for a high mileage engine, knowing it is the recommended grade for a new engine??? And of course is it really better to use these synthetic oils in this "basic" engine? Probably that the synthetic blends are more than enough to protect it and they are also slightly cheaper (around 1.5 times cheaper in fact). Thanks for feedback!
 
Last edited:

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
...and by the way which one between c and d would you recommend? Seems d has better specs according to the technical sheets although it's not a full synthetic...
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2002
Messages
39,802
Location
Pottstown, PA
I don't see an unsuitable one in the bunch. The Super Low-Friction SAE 10W-40 is one specifically NOT suitable for extended drain intervals ..which I don't think your 9k/km is. They really promote the low friction aspect of this oil. This would be considered a High Mileage oil here due to the seal conditioners. (c&d)It is interesting that the higher extended drain oil is only a semi-synthetic. We tend to over do things here. I'd be partial to the 4100, myself ..but it may be a waste over the term you're going to use it. You're doing enough mileage to eliminate most of the time related fatigue factors (cold starts, short trips, high percentage of fuel enrichment driving) and your engine is supposed to be easy on oil ..so durability isn't an issue. I don't understand the age factor that seems to mean something in your case. Does this engine have routine consumption that advanced in frequency of top up as it aged?
 

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
Hi Gary, first thanks for the feedback! Basically I cannot say my engine is burning oil. With the current 10W40 I'm using (Mobil Super S), I have topped up about 2liters in 13,000km (which is about 2qt in 8000 miles). As far as I remember I had slightly more with the previous 5W40 I used but not much. The age factor for me concerns the wider internal tolerances of the engine due to wear. 5w40 is good for a new engine but it may be too thin in a "worn" engine. 10w40 may be just perfect...but I have no idea about that. The engine still have good compression so I assume it's not worn out. The frequency of top-ups doesn't seem to have changed over time. I just think I had slightly more frequent top ups with 5W40 than with the actual 10w40. Since both are 40 grades, I thought it was more due to the lower viscosity when cold of the 5w40 oil and thus that the engine was mostly burning oil when cold. However it may also be due to different oil quality (more evaporation etc). No clue about that but I assumed I had more oil consumption with the 5w40. Actually I don't know what means extended drain intervals. For sure these are like 20k or 30k km OCI but I tend to think that 15k km (or 9k miles) is already somewhat "extended". I fear that both 10W40, since they are pretty basic oils packed up with lots of viscosity improvers, would break down quikly and not allow 15k km (9k miles) OCI safely. I would rather use a good oil that can do 15k km OCI safely even if it costs more coz in the long run its cheaper ot only in engine maintenance but simply in oil prices (better do 15k oci with a good oil than 10k with a slightly cheaper one...). So my concern is with aging potential of those 10w40...and the fact that the 5w40 may be too thin in a high mileage engine. Do you think that the super low friction 10w40 can hold 15k km (9k miles) OCI safely?? Moreover is it better to consider that low friction oil for my engine as it seems to be a "high mileage" oil or should I prefer the better TopTec 4100 5w40, which is not a high mileage oil but seems quite better anyway?? The seal conditioners in the 10w40 seems a good thing for a 200k miles old engine no? My actual preference would go for the TopTec 4100. I don't see any reason to consider the full synthetic Synthoil as the TopTec has better specs and approval althugh not being full synthetic. However I'm still hesitating with that Low Friction oil which seems nice too. Do you think the 5w40 would still provide better cold protectin compared to the 10w40 high mileage?? Thanks
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 28, 2002
Messages
39,802
Location
Pottstown, PA
 Quote:
first thanks for the feedback! Basically I cannot say my engine is burning oil. With the current 10W40 I'm using (Mobil Super S), I have topped up about 2liters in 13,000km (which is about 2qt in 8000 miles). As far as I remember I had slightly more with the previous 5W40 I used but not much.
Can I assume that the consumption is linear? If so, a quart every 6500k/km isn't bad. At that consumption rate, what was your oil change interval. You appear to be attempting to go to 15kkm, while you appear to be quite close to that with 13kkm.
 Quote:
The age factor for me concerns the wider internal tolerances of the engine due to wear. 5w40 is good for a new engine but it may be too thin in a "worn" engine.
I don't know how old your engine is. I know the mileage. Again, a quart/liter every 6500km doesn't indicate a "worn" engine to me.
 Quote:
Since both are 40 grades, I thought it was more due to the lower viscosity when cold of the 5w40 oil and thus that the engine was mostly burning oil when cold. However it may also be due to different oil quality (more evaporation etc). No clue about that but I assumed I had more oil consumption with the 5w40.
Cold states are not where I would expect consumption to occur. If consumption can be altered, it may be altered with viscosity ..but all of these oils (including the Mobil 10w-40) are within a narrow enough range for hot viscosity, that I don't think there would be a change in consumption between them if that was the intended outcome. We don't know the condition of your current oil after your done with it. I imagine UOA is expensive over there, but it would tell you if the oil sheared or otherwise degraded over your typical usage.
 Quote:
Do you think that the super low friction 10w40 can hold 15k km (9k miles) OCI safely??
If you were in America, I wouldn't hesitate telling someone that they could use a 10w-40 for 9000 mile OCI if they were a 12,000 mile annual driver. On the other hand, I don't know if you do routine Alpine hill climbs for fun ..and don't think anything about them For, our often required, "peace of mind", I would go with the 4100 5w-40 that's specifically blended for extended drains. I wouldn't react at the first onset of consumption if it's a little premature. It will probably subside as you move forward. I'd really prefer you go with the cheapest and use it for the full term of 15000km and then do a UOA. That way you can have the best economies. One OCI isn't going to alter long term wear, especially in this narrow range of oils, imo.
 

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
Here are a bit more info about my car: Volvo S40 Year: 1997 Engine: 2.0 normally aspirated 140hp (not available in US, you only have the turbo) Mileage: 325,000km Oil consumption appears linear, maybe just slightly more towards the end of the service life of oil. My goal is really to keep 15k km intervals (as recommended by Volvo) but safely. UOA is good but indeed way too expensive over here. If the TopTec 4100 is better for peace of mind, then it's not much more expensive and I'll know there is no problem for 15k km intervals. However that's only one part of the story. The "plus" of the 10w40 low friction (aside of being cheaper than the TopTec) are: - it's a 10W40! The 10W may be better for engine protection at high mileage...all high mileage oils are 10w not 5w right? So it may indeed mean that a 10W grade is more suitable to a highmileage engine? - it has seals conditioners which is a big plus for an old engine! If it can hold 15k km (9k miles) OCI that may be a nice package but I wonder if the additive would not break down quickly and not hold the distance. I heard that non synthetic 10W40 oils are the most prone to breakdown...and 15k km OCI is quite a long distance. I do hesitate because I can get fair prices on these Liqui Moly oils only if I order them in 20L containers. Ordering 5L makes the price rather expensive so if I do the move I should be fairly confident in using the 20L (that's about 3 OCI plus a few top ups). Aside of "peace of mind" in term of durability, why would the TopTec 4100 5W40 be recommended over the low friction 10W40 since the latter one appears "more" suited to a high mileage engine? PS: according to Liqui-Moly website: TopTec 4100 is a hydro-cracked oil Super low friction is a semi-synthetic oil Synthoil is a full synthetic oil Is hydro-cracked superior as semi-synthetic?
 
Last edited:
Joined
Sep 28, 2002
Messages
39,802
Location
Pottstown, PA
 Quote:
- it's a 10W40! The 10W may be better for engine protection at high mileage...all high mileage oils are 10w not 5w right? So it may indeed mean that a 10W grade is more suitable to a highmileage engine?
High mileage oils, more often than not are 10w, they also tend to be higher viscosity (100C) than their regular contemporaries. While 325,000km is relatively high mileage, I have a 99 engine with over 233,000km and don't consider it "old". It shouldn't be too far behind you in 2 years. I consider wear at our annual accumulations as a non-factor on most of the engine. You're putting on about average for my wife. I'm more worried about a car accident. You should still be on the flat bottom of the bathtub wear curve. ..but if I had leaking valve seals, a high mileage oil with those seal conditioners would be an option. I don't expect to need them, myself.
 Quote:
If it can hold 15k km (9k miles) OCI that may be a nice package but I wonder if the additive would not break down quickly and not hold the distance. I heard that non synthetic 10W40 oils are the most prone to breakdown...and 15k km OCI is quite a long distance.
This was the case in years past. I can't say that it's NOT the case now, since it's not spec'd for any vehicle that I can think of. Most who currently use conventional 40 grades aren't using them for anything near 15000km. For those who desire a 40 grade, they usually choose a 15w-40 conventional or 5w-40 HDEO mixed fleet diesel oil. Some do use Mobil 1 10w-40, but they're in the minority.
 Quote:
I do hesitate because I can get fair prices on these Liqui Moly oils only if I order them in 20L containers. Ordering 5L makes the price rather expensive so if I do the move I should be fairly confident in using the 20L (that's about 3 OCI plus a few top ups).
Well, that is a commitment. I understand your need to choose carefully.
 Quote:
Aside of "peace of mind" in term of durability, why would the TopTec 4100 5W40 be recommended over the low friction 10W40 since the latter one appears "more" suited to a high mileage engine?
It's specifically blended for the longest drain intervals. Double what Volvo specifies for your engine. While it may lack seal conditioners that you may or not need, it should be well buffered for extended deposit control and the list of usual suspects. Again, if you were in the states, I'd be sending you to WallMart for a few gallons of Rotella T Synthetic 5w-40 ..or a number of robust oils that would work for you ..and do it with confidence. I put in a PM to see if Doug Hillary can chime in. He should have the insight into the state of the art in Euro oils. His last dialog on the topic of Euro oils was that there have been decent advancements in the 10w-40 grades, iirc.
 

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
OK thanks Gary, I'll wait for Doug's input as well before making a decision. I really tend to prefer the TopTec to be on the safe side for 15K km OCI. Currently the engine developped a slight leak on the front crankshaft seal (at least I suspect it). Strangely that leak started after switching from 5w40 to 10w40 (but that was a poor 10w40 supermarket oil, not the Mobil Super S). I have no idea whether it's the oil switch that made the seal leak....or if it's me blowing compressed air in the PCV system to clean it before draining the oil... Anyway I have to do the timing belt next week and I'll renew that front seal (that was renewed as preventive maintenance at 220'000km..). The rear main seal is still stock and I really cross my finger that it doesn't start to leak in the future. This is why a high mileage oil with seal conditioners may be good too but not if it's not able to achieve 10-15K km OCI.
 
Joined
May 30, 2003
Messages
5,117
Location
Airlie Beach Australia
Hi, kilou - Both viscosity lubricants (5W-40 synthetic and 10W-40 semi synthetic)should do 10-15k kms OCIs with some reserve. The variance will be in the cold start performance situation and you will know what that is like there! If you are getting good results with the semi synthetic 10W-40 I would stick with that viscosity. In Europe as you know, 10W-40 semi synthetic lubricants are quite common with a good development background. They are now being used as Service fill in older engines by factory dealerships The 10W-40 viscosity has always been quite popular in Europe
 

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
Hi Doug, in terms of cold start performance I guess the 5w40 is better than the 10W40...but I really do consider the seal conditioners in the 10W40 as a real plus for my old engine. Does it makes sense to favor the 10W40 with these seals conditioners over the 5W40 oil as "preventive care" especially for the valve seals? It's true that there seem to be a difference between Europe and US as fa as 10W40 is concerned. Here most vehicle do recommend and use 10W40 oils. Actually it's probably the most popular grade in Europe except for recent engines that favor w30 grades for lower emissions. Actually I wonder what is "peace of mind" in my case :) Either it's an oil that can safely cover 15k km (assured with Top Tec 4100)....or it's a high mileage oil that will keep seals in good conditions (seems to be the case for the Supe Low friction oil). Then comes the story of cold start but will a 5w40 really lower cold start wear compared to a 10w40 in an old engine?? However I'm looking at other threads on high mileage oils and many people seem to think it's pure commercial hype.... I got good results both with 5w40 and 10w40. Slightly more oil consumption with 5w40...but usually a bit more valve lifters noises when cold with the 10W40 in winter. That may be something to consider as well in favour of the 5W40.
 
Last edited:

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
OK after reviewing other offers, I can get Mobil 1 5W40 for the same price as the TopTec 4100 5W40. Would the M1 5W40 be better for my high mileage engine knowing it's a full synthetic??
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2002
Messages
39,802
Location
Pottstown, PA
Which formulation? Esso Ultron 5W-40 Mobil Delvac 1 5W-40 Mobil Synt S 5W-40 Mobil 1 5W-40 Mobil Delvac 1 SHC 5W-40 Mobil Synt S Special V 5W-40
 

kilou

Thread starter
Joined
Jun 2, 2004
Messages
430
Location
Switzerland
 Originally Posted By: Gary Allan
Which formulation? Esso Ultron 5W-40 Mobil Delvac 1 5W-40 Mobil Synt S 5W-40 Mobil 1 5W-40 Mobil Delvac 1 SHC 5W-40 Mobil Synt S Special V 5W-40
The bottle only mentions Mobil 1 5W40 so it's the 4th one in your list. I don't exactly know which one of these 2 it is since specs are slightly different: 1) (in french) http://www.mobil.com/Belgium-French/Lubes/PDS/glxxfrpvlmomobil1_5w-40.pdf 2) (in english) http://xom.ee/files/35_mobil1_5w-40.pdf In 1) it is mentionned that TBN is 11.4 while it is "only" 7.6 for the TopTec 4100. However the TopTec seems approved for more applications and explicitly mentions it can be used for extended drain intervals. Moreover it is not a full synthetic, which can be good for me because I still have a load of AutoRX to use and this can help condition the seals as well. I guess RX cannot be used with the M1 5W40. I'd probably get the TopTec 4100 and forget the Low friction 10W40 (better have this 5W grade to avoid valve lifters noise) but depending on specs do you see any reason I should prefer the M1 5W40 to the TopTec 4100 for a high mileage application? Reminder: tech sheet TopTec 4100: http://www.liqui-moly.de/liquimoly/medie...c%204100_EN.pdf
 
Last edited:
Top